Optical Pollution

Oct 10, 2018

To the Editor:

Thank you to The SandPaper for reporting on the controversy over the 28th Street light in Ship Bottom. Each fall, when the lights go to flash, I find it difficult to remember that 28th Street is the exception since, from a distance, it doesn’t stand out from all the flashing yellows. I am not alone.

I’ve seen plenty of drivers miss the red signal and fly right though that intersection. I’m glad that’s stopped. I also agree with a previous letter writer that as a pedestrian or cyclist, crossing a five-lane Long Beach Boulevard in Ship Bottom and Beach Haven is frustrating and terrifying.

Back in the 1960s I recall that, except for Eighth and Ninth streets in Ship Bottom, all traffic signals would be turned off entirely. There was no flashing as far as you can see. Some were even removed for maintenance.

I’d like to ask the mayors and police chiefs to consider going back to this. Then re-activate a certain number of signals on the Boulevard to provide safe crossing routes and to break up traffic into groups of cars and create spaces between the groups. This would allow better, safer opportunities to cross the Boulevard, even between the lights, and keep the speeds down. With inactive lights totally off, the active lights would be more visible and effective.

The towns are already going to the trouble of installing stop signs at intersections controlled by a flashing red lights so all these lights are superfluous. All this flashing is just optical pollution.

Mark B. Vizer

Ship Bottom


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